gula.recipes

Over a million recipes, zero ads.

About

gula.recipes’s mission is to provide a distraction-free, privacy respecting and fast recipe search experience. It’s brought to you by Caio Romão and the code is open source.

Contribute

Using the service and spreading the word around is the best way to help right now. If you’d like to contribute to this project’s sustainability and can spare a little money, donations are more than welcome!

Donate via PayPal

PayPal is far from ideal, so if monetary contributions become a thing I’ll set up a transparent organization (on OpenCollective, likely) so that you always know what your money is being used for.

Not a Product, Not a Business

This was created and is still developed as a hobby project, meaning that in here there’s a lot of perceived value in having fun, pacing myself, keeping things lean and sticking to my ideals.

Sustainability is a goal, profit isn’t. Traditional ads will never have a place here, which means there’s no incentive to making things inefficient: I want you to be able to find a recipe and get to cooking as quickly as possible, not keep you using this site for long just so that I can show you a lot of ads.

History

Autumn 2017, I decide to fix some of my bad habits and engage in cooking mostly low-carb meals daily and using r/progresspics and similar as the main motivation driver.

While the weight was going down, a series of frustrations with the status-quo of searching for recipes started building up: pervasive tracking, ads everywhere, excessive interactivity, subscription walls, rubbish generated content to drive traffic and slow data-heavy pages.

A year and 50+ kg (110 lbs) lost later, I found myself wanting to give back to the community, but unable to do so since sharing my success story via before/after pictures triggered too many concerns related to privacy and misuse (and self confidence, of course).

Meanwhile, I started writing a simple tool to help me manage the somewhat big list of recipe links I had collected over time: A plain-text file wasn’t good enough anymore, the existing websites offering a similar thing hadn’t improved on my gripes over time (quite the opposite, actually).

I quickly found myself writing scrapers for my favorite sites to make it easier to extract the recipes out of the wall of text that usually precedes the real content. After a few iterations of doing just that, things started clicking and I went from a small hand-crafted database of about 100 recipes to 10.000 recipes with little effort; A few more tweaks and forgetting the crawler running overnight left me with around 100.000 recipes.

And then things got interesting :-) Growing this to the current 1+M database size took more time than effort and I finally had something that I could do to keep me entertained for a while and give back to the community: a recipe search engine that doesn’t have all of those annoying things we all have to deal with in today’s web.

Acknowledgments

This project is a one-man show, but that’s not to say there hasn’t been help from tools and third parties: